Muscat: The British Council, in partnership with the Oman School Sports Association, Ministry of Sports Affairs, yesterday celebrated the completion of its Youth Sport Leadership programme with a fun and engaging sports festival attended by 60 young leaders and 200 students at Sultan Qaboos Sports Complex, Bousher.
The festival was the culmination of two weeks of training, designed to assist teachers and coaches to work with young people so they can take charge and lead their own sports festivals in their schools and communities.
The first week of training focused on supporting local coaches and trainers, while during the second week, the trainers put what they had learned into action by mentoring the young student leaders aged between 14 and 17 to plan and organise a sports festival for younger students.
Youth Sports Leadership is a three-year sports education programme, which helps practitioners develop key future skills such as leadership, teamwork, resilience and communication skills through sports. The training, which is delivered through a cascade model, supports the ongoing sustainability of the programme and the development of young people involved into independent and responsible leaders who can become volunteers to #MakeSportHappen in their communities.
Held in partnership with Youth Sports Trust International, an independent charity, the initiative helps build knowledge of sports teaching and inspires the next generation of leaders in the community sport, as well as empowers young people and the wider community to lead a more active lifestyle. Next year, a selection of coaches and teachers will have the opportunity to train to reach the “national trainer” level, which certifies them to deliver training as independent instructors across the Sultanate.
Commenting on the success of the programme, Laila Al Najjar, Vice President of the Oman School Sport Association, Ministry of Education, said: “We are proud to partner with the British Council to support initiatives that are beneficial to our students and have a positive impact on the wider community. The Youth Sports Leadership programme has been a great success, not only improving sports education in Oman, but also contributing to the country’s vision of building strong and active communities.
The two-week training benefited leaders and students and resulted in unity in knowledge and responsibility.
Congratulations to all the participants and everyone who contributed to its success.”
Zuweina Al Mamaary, Assistant Director Projects at British Council, added: “We are honoured to collaborate with the Oman Ministry of Education, which recognises the importance of unleashing the potential of their students through sports, in line with the Vision 2040 goals to improve sports participation rates across the country. Youth Sports Leadership is not just for people who love sports.
"It is designed to be inclusive for all young people who want to learn how to grow their leadership skills, increase their confidence and work more collaboratively in groups.
"Sport has the ability to inspire and unite people and we are extremely proud to have completed another successful programme and witnessed the results of the initiative.”
Nawal Rashid Alhouqari expressed her excitement over the festival: “I am proud to have been involved in the Youth Sports Leadership programme.
It has been a lot of fun and I have also learned really valuable skills that I can use in my everyday life.”
Youth Sports Leadership is one of several initiatives the British Council offers as part of its cultural relations work, which includes arts, education, science and sports projects that work with young people to create an environment in which they can learn essential skills and behaviours to achieve their full potential.